Edge of the west
Post Partisan Depression
By Ron Scott Smith
Dec 14, 2008 - 2:31:04 PM

Like the bad old country song says, “I miss you already and you’re not even gone.”

Bushamerica is going away soon, and I think I miss it before the door has even hit it in the ass on its way out.

I mean, it’s been eight years of highlight-reel botchery that has given activists, op-ed columnists, bloggers and talk show hosts a bevy of riches, and oh my god, what do we do now?

What’s the songwriter to do with his peace song?

What’s the environmental activist to do now that we’re all in with Kyoto?

What’s the free health clinic to do when everybody has access to medical care?

It’s an awkward moment, waking up in the morning with nothing to bitch about.

It’s so awkward that the theme music for the ultra-liberal Stephanie Miller radio show has transformed from the defiant Twisted Sister scream, “We’re Not Gonna Take It” to some mindless “Walking on Sunshine” pablum by somebody called Katrina and the Waves.

It’s so awkward that the supremely arrogant Sean Hannity has taken to cowering with his shell-shocked buddies in the new right wing underground, calling his show, “Conservatives in Exile.”

It’s so awkward that Toby Keith and the Dixie Chicks are swapping roles as we speak, with his now the unpatriotic, anti-American voice ashamed of his darker-hued president-elect, while the Chicks announce they will open their concerts with an a cappella rendition of “God Bless America.”

And it’s so awkward that Santa Monica icon, Jerry Peace Activist Rubin, is thinking about legally changing his name again, this time to Jerry No Worries Rubin.

After these eight years that have seemed like 80, it’s as if a difficult birth has been given, and the writhing, the heavy breathing, the pushing is over, leaving many with nothing so much as a sort of post-partum, i.e. post partisan depression.

Barack Obama has already made a few things clear to reassure Americans that their tough rebirth will be worth the pain.

Not two weeks after his election, he reiterated his position on torture and Guantanamo. He told "60 Minutes" that “America does not torture, and I’m going to make sure that we don’t torture.” On the same show: “I have said repeatedly that I intend to close Guantanamo and I will follow through on that.”

And then he went on to reaffirm that he will indeed be bringing American soldiers home from the man-made Bush hell that has become Iraq. “I stick to this commitment that as soon as I take office we will start executing a plan that will draw down our troops.”

And he made clear that the United States of America will unhesitatingly join the rest of the world in support of the Kyoto Treaty that tries desperately to quell the looming global warming threat.

He’s made all this clear and he’s not even the president yet. Which does raise the question where is the current one, the too-bad-to-be-true Bush one? Well, let him stay away for these last six weeks, please. No new shenanigans, no new disaster, no new Iraq, no new Katrina, no new economic meltdown, please. Down, boy.

As our human train wreck of a president leaves us and the new one arrives, is it just me or are there a whole lot less middle fingers being flipped out on the freeways? Are there a whole lot less of those guys who intentionally linger in their cars in crowded parking lots just to annoy the other guy waiting to get into the space? I have a theory that after eight years of waterboarding, phone tapping, swiftboating, car bombing, blackballing, et al, everybody’s been in a cantankerous mood, with everybody just about having had it with everybody else. Is it far-fetched to predict that a lot of that may be about to change?

Barack Obama, just as much as he is not the evil socialist that the right wing fears him to be, is certainly not the cure-all that the left wing wishes him to be. He will be sitting at the helm of a thoroughly broken and deformed government and there are no quick fixes. But there is surely some kind of a new feel out here.  

Too-good-to-be-true will always trump too-bad-to-be-true, won’t it?



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